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Dubnyk, Koivu help Wild defeat Penguins

Goalie makes 29 saves, forward breaks tie in third period

by Jessi Pierce / NHL.com Correspondent

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- Devan Dubnyk made 29 saves, and Mikko Koivu scored the tiebreaking goal in the third period to give the Minnesota Wild a 2-1 win against the Pittsburgh Penguins at Xcel Energy Center on Saturday.

 

[WATCH: All Penguins vs. Wild highlights]

 

Koivu deflected in a pass from Mike Reilly at 9:03 of the third. Minnesota (4-3-2) has won two consecutive games and is 3-1-0 in its past four.

"I think we're starting to show the way we need to play to win hockey games," Koivu said. "… There were some parts of that early on and we just couldn't keep it for 60 minutes. I think, for the most part, for the last two games, we've been able to keep that consistency.

"It's still early, but that's what you want, you want to build on it and keep working on it and that's what brings you success."

Video: PIT@MIN: Dubnyk extends his right pad to rob Crosby

It was the first regulation loss for Pittsburgh goaltender Matt Murray since a 4-1 loss to the Nashville Predators in Game 4 of the Stanley Cup Final on June 5. Murray made 27 saves and is 7-1-1 this season.

Evegni Malkin scored on the power play at 11:52 of the first period to give the Penguins a 1-0 lead. Malkin has eight points (three goals, five assists) in the past six games.

Daniel Winnik tied it 1-1 at 13:36, scoring off a rebound from a shot by Matt Cullen, who played his former team for the first time since winning the Stanley Cup twice with them (2016, 2017). Cullen, who signed a one-year, $1 million contract with Minnesota on Aug. 16, got his second point of the season with the assist.

The Penguins (7-4-1) played the first of a five-game road trip; they are at the Winnipeg Jets on Sunday.

"It was a tight game," Penguins defenseman Kris Letang said. "I think it could have gone either way. We missed a couple chances, but we have to turn the page and focus on a back-to-back game. This year we're not successful on those, so I think we have to find a way to play a hard road game to get the result."

Video: PIT@MIN: Malkin scores PPG on double deflection

 

Goal of the game

Koivu's goal at 9:03 of the third period.

Video: PIT@MIN: Koivu deflects one home from the slot

 

Save of the game

Dubnyk stopped a snap shot by Patric Hornqvist at 14:43 of the third period.

 

Highlight of the game

Winnik's rebound at 13:36 of the first period.

Video: PIT@MIN: Winnik buries rebound after sweet deke

 

They said it

"I don't think we're good enough 5-on-5 right now. We tend to be one and done in the offensive zone, and we're not getting to the net enough, we're not winning enough loose-puck battles, and as a result we're not spending enough time there. It's not any one thing. There's no magic bullet to scoring goals 5-on-5, but this team I know has the ability to score goals 5-on-5 because they've done it for a long time. And that's where our game has to improve right now. Special teams for the most part have been pretty solid, and we got another power-play goal tonight. Our penalty kill did a pretty good job. Our overall 5-on-5 game has to improve." -- Penguins coach Mike Sullivan

 

"Well, I don't know if [beating Pittsburgh] carries [more weight]. ... The most important thing to me is getting the two in a row and getting over .500, albeit it's only one game. We have to start somewhere. It was playing Pittsburgh last year that started us to play like we're capable of playing on a nightly basis. It was a much-needed win." -- Wild coach Bruce Boudreau

 

Need to know

Kessel has 10 points (three goals, seven assists) in the past eight games. … Spurgeon has five points (one goal, four assists) in the past four games. He leads the Wild with seven assists and is tied for first with eight points.

 

What's next

Wild: Host the Winnipeg Jets on Tuesday (8 p.m. ET; FS-N, TSN3, NHL.TV)

Penguins: At the Winnipeg Jets on Sunday (7 p.m. ET; NHLN, SN, TVA Sports, ATTSN-PT, NHL.TV)

 

Video: Dubnyk, Koivu propel Wild to 2-1 win against Penguins

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